The New York Islanders played Robin Lehner for the first time since he left the team during the offseason last night. Blackhawks coach Jermey Colliton put in Robin Lehner as starting goalie and Barry Trotz threw in Thomas Greiss to start. Sitting at second place in the Metropolitan Division, the Islanders needed two huge points
During morning practice, the Isles visit to Chicago was discussed. Robin Lehner commented on the bond of the team and the skilled players within the Islanders locker room. Islanders captain Anders Lee recognized Lehner’s “spark” that he brought to the locker room.
When the game started, it looked promising. During the first period, Ross Johnston put the Isles on the board. Josh Bailey threw the puck in front and Johnston tipped it past Lehner to make the game 1-0. Chicago defenseman Dennis Gilbert back-handed his first goal of the season to tie the game two minutes after the Isles scored. Chicago didn’t give up after the goal though.
Dominik Kubalik and Alex DeBrincat scored to close out the first period with the score at 3-1 Chicago. Thomas Greiss was removed from the ice and Semyon Varlamov remained in net for the rest of the game.
The second period was quiet on the scoring side but during the third period Chicago scored two more goals. Jonathan Toews scores his ninth goal of the season and Matthew Highmore recorded his first goal. Casey Cizikas scored late in the third to try and start the comeback but the Isles could not catch up. Robin Lehner ended up winning his first game against the Islanders since leaving this offseason 5-2.
This is the third consecutive loss for the Islanders. In the last five games, the Islanders have given up 24 goals and only accumulated two points. The Islanders will look to get back on track when then visit the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center on Dec. 29 at 6 p.m.